Belgian camper market growing 10% per year
The market for campers or ‘mobile or motor homes’ as they are often referred to in Belgium, is growing continuously with 10% each year. From 2010 to 2016 it grew 52,6% says FEBIAC, Belgian federation of car importers. The first three months of this year 1.162 campers were registered in Belgium, being a growth of 7,8%. In Europe they accounted for 25.881 vehicles, a growth of 8.1%.
Vanomobil (Wevelgem, Tremelo and Hoogstraten) and Dicar (Geel), two major Belgian companies selling campers based on converted light commercial vehicles, put respectively 600 and more then 1.000 campers on the road each year. Dicar uses 30 of them for renting, Vanomobil about 100, serving around 1.000 people.
Renting as oxygen for the market
“Renting is giving the market its oxygen”, says Vanomobil’s CEO Ignace Coudron. “People don’t know this kind of vehicle and want to test it by renting it first”. The average buyer of a camper is between 45 and 65 years old, says Coudron. Louis Van Eyck, marketing manager at Dicar sees mostly 55-plus buyers for small campers.
Younger people tend to rent more, starting from 25 to 55, often families choosing a camper for six persons. In sales, two extremes, the compact camper up to 6 metres and the luxury xl campers up to 7,6 metres are most wanted. It mostly are campers based on a VW mini-bus with a lifting roof up to a modified Fiat Ducato, Citroën Jumper or Peugeot Boxer.
The modified vans counted for 10% five years ago, but 30% now. When ordering a camper, a waiting period of 6 to 8 months has to be reckoned in for delivery of the chassis by the car manufacturer and the time needed for the build up of the camper housing and equipment. Fiat apparently is the car maker delivering the most chassis for campers in Belgium.